By Jennifer Kotila
HOWARD LAKE, MN The Howard Lake Business and Community Expo is an opportunity for local businesses to show community support, according to Howard Lake Business Association (HLBA) president Randy Heuer.
The expo takes place this Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Howard Lake-Waverly-Winsted Middle School in Howard Lake,
“Historically, the expo was a way for businesses to show their appreciation to customers and the community, which is why there is a free breakfast,” Heuer said.
The HLBA serves a free pancake and sausage breakfast during the expo, which is consumed by more than 1,000 people each year.
Many more people walk through the business exhibition area, Heuer said.
“Most of the businesses that exhibit at the expo are from Wright, McLeod, and Carver counties, but businesses from any community are welcome to reserve a booth,” Heuer said.
The expo gives businesses the opportunity to showcase their services and products for local residents, and network with businesses in Howard Lake and surrounding communities.
An Annandale body shop owner who attended the expo last year knows he has at least four new customers from being there, Heuer noted.
This year, several new businesses will be exhibiting their products and services at the expo, according to HLBA treasurer Bonnie Seegmiller.
A special exhibitor is the Central Minnesota Small Business Development Center, directed by Barry Kirchoff, said HLBA member Jeff Schoess.
Kirchoff, who was a speaker at last year’s expo, has more than 30 years of business management experience in retail, route and warehouse distribution, and human resources and training.
He will be promoting local jobs, and the opening of a small business development center in Wright County through the Wright County Economic Development Partnership.
There are still booths available, and the HLBA is offering a discounted booth rate to all Howard Lake businesses, to encourage them to take advantage of the opportunity to meet a lot of potential customers in one place.
All Howard Lake businesses are able to reserve a booth at a rate of $35 for a small booth, or $55 for a large booth.
For businesses outside of Howard Lake, the rate to reserve a booth is $70 for a small booth, or $90 for a large booth.
For booth reservations or questions, contact Bonnie Seegmiller at (320) 543-2650 or (320) 543-2915.